This is my bicycle:
It's an old, rickety, Peugeot, and I was informed on Sunday at the local bike cooperative that it is from the 1960s. I didn't realize my bike was that old. This makes me want to work a little harder to ride it as long as I can make it survive.
This was my Valentine's day:
Two girlfriends and I made valentines to old loves and the things we hate about the world, and then we burned them. I also got more practice reading tarot cards. The valentine effigies weren't my idea-- I'm actually not that jaded about such things, but I do always like a little bit of fire.
I rode my bike tonight, half drunk down a bike trail, by the light of the moon. It was a dear friend's birthday, and this required a gathering at our favorite local microbrewery, as it usually does.
I appreciated the aesthetics of the nearby warehouses that line the rail trail, as I often do, but I noted that the absence of the sun made them seem quite a bit more menacing. There was no one, nothing, no cars around, just dark and me and my bike at night, and as always I find this recurring event beautiful, invigorating, and slightly nihilistic. The stars are always gorgeous without the city lights, and the air was fair outside, except for an inexplicable, subtle smoky haze.
I rode fast by the empty Railrunner station, past the barbed wire fenced lot of New Mexico State cars. I saw a lonely biker sitting at a bus stop. The buses had long stopped running. The absence of the sun made me pedal faster, instead of pointedly smiling and saying hello, as I normally would try.
I signed a non-disclosure statement when I started working for the corporate-reincarnated version of my collegiate alma mater. Does this mean that I can't talk about the rapport I have with students-- the ongoing solidarity we find in cigarettes, coffee, art, and guilty pleasures like lady gaga?
I could entertain the wild past, but not here or now.
Every day is an unexpected journey somewhere. I believe I need to fill my blank notebook pages with the enormous experiences and absurdities and profundities of my past five and a half years in this bizarre adobe town.
Tonight at dinner the CSF alum and faculty talked about the barracks. Much of the CSF campus was composed of barracks from a 1940s army hospital in Santa Fe. Art studios, music studios, our cafeteria, rehearsal spaces, residences for the Christian Brothers and more were housed in the barracks, and the soul of their history, and the history students created over decades were fodder for many a great creation, memory, and experience.
I'm having European flashbacks like a junkie. Specifically Balkan/Mediterranean ones. Specific places, moments, tastes, smells, infiltrate my senses during the most mundane moments of my day. I find myself eying my passport weekly, daydreaming about the possible. Trying to conceive of a localized border cross that would satisfy my wanderlust, and perpetual need to escape the American paradigm.
And the taste of Bulgarian feta cheese on the train ride to Athens haunts me.
I walk St. Michael's Drive every day. I cross it by foot or by bike, and wonder if my life will someday be taken by one of those egotistical speeding oblivious Western cars. I'd like to believe I'm a cowgirl, but the boots don't cut it. I need a horse or a pickup truck. I need to drive like a maniac. No deal.
I have been staying awake contributing to some non-linear document defining vision and implementation of the St. Michael's project. It's a vivid daydream masquerading as a campaign plan. The project will center around a public space in the midst of desolate centrally-located commercial space that will be a community arts center, and a hub and catalyst for much more. There is much to be said here (and I've been painstakingly working to articulate it all) but it's late, and I will save the full story for another time.